The permafrost thawing will release hundreds of billions of tons of carbon, lead to dramatic changes in global climate and as well as to economy
Arctic is melting rapidly due to greenhouse gas emission and scientists have already figured out how much this warming will contribute to climate change. Arctic is warming at a rate which is twice as much as the global average. If it continues to heat up the way it is, the permafrost will start to thaw and unleash hundreds of billions of tones of methane and carbon dioxide trapped underneath it to the atmosphere. Arctic permafrost contains 1,700 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide under its surface in the form of frozen matter.
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The release of this stored carbon will not only affect the global climate but it will also lead to dramatic consequences on global economy as well. Recently researchers from Cambridge and Colorado Universities have calculated the impact of arctic melting on global economy and have found that it will cost a staggering $43 trillion by the end of 2200, an increase of 13% from now.
Researchers have taken into account all the losses from flooding and extreme weather as well as the cost of air-conditioning, which will require for cooling residents and other places.
"These results show just how much we need urgent action to slow the melting of the permafrost in order to minimize the scale of the release of greenhouse gases,” said co-author Dr. Chris Hope.
Researchers used an integrated assessment model PAGE09 alongside previous data related to climate change to come up with the recent calculations.
“We want to use these models to help us make better decisions – linking scientific and economic models together is a way to help us do that.” said Hope. “We need to estimate how much it will cost if we do nothing, how much it will cost if we do something, and how much we need to spend to cutback greenhouse gases.”
The study was published in Nature.